We began first with Exploring Creation with Astronomy, then the next year moved on to Exploring Creation with Botany, and this year we began zoology with Exploring Creation with Flying Creatures of the Fifth Day. Next year we'll begin Exploring Creation with Swimming Creatures of the Fifth Day.
There are many reasons that I like Apologia. Just a few are:
- It is biblically sound and has scripture throughout the lessons as well as points to the intelligent design of creation.
- It has fun and relevant activities and experiments suggested throughout the book.
- It digs in deep to a particular subject and you learn so much.
- It's a subject that works well for multiple grades, thus allowing us to do this together as a family.
I know sometimes there are concerns about spending a whole year on only one topic, but we find that we enjoy really diving in and learning all that we can about that topic. It gives us a whole year to do special projects, take related field trips, and do more activities that relate as well. And having a longer time period to learn about the topic at hand gives it more of an opportunity to really "sink in" and take root. I love it when the kids can still recall things they learned in astronomy over 2 years ago and in botany over a year ago.
The corresponding journals can also be fun, although we haven't used them every single year. We did use the journals for astronomy and flying creatures--each time the kids shared one journal and I divided the pages and projects between them. We made our own botany journals however and that was fun, too. Sometimes the journal pages can seem like "busy work" though and the kiddos get weary with them. I don't want them to dread them and am considering doing a year without any journal. I think that may also give us more time to do the extra activities and experiments suggested which would be a lot of fun for us all.
Some of the related activities that we enjoyed this year were:
- visiting and learning about the wild birds at our local nature center
- making our own bird feeder
- having a feeder set up for a viewing station
- looking at slides of flying insects on our microscope
- having pet crickets for a while to study
This week you can check out the Apologia Year-End Round Up with lots of other Apologia users over at My Joy Filled Life. Sarah will be posting all week about how others are using Apologia. Drop by and check out what others have to say about it!
If you're a homeschooler, too, I'd love to hear if you use Apologia and what you think of it--or tell me about what science curriculum you do use and why you love it.
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